(TibetanReview.net, Oct07, 2017) – The Congressional Executive Commission on China (CECC) of the US administration and Congress has been severely critical of China on its rights record in the country during the past one year, including especially in Tibet. Releasing its 2017 Annual Report and recommendations on Oct 5, the commission has said the Chinese Communist Party and government had continued to implement repressive policies in Tibet through the use of extensive and intrusive surveillance, strict regulations and rules to restrict Tibetans’ fundamental rights, and pervasive displays of police and military force.
In specific terms, the report says China has continued to violate the right of religious freedom of Tibetans through a system of pervasive controls and restrictions. It also says the Chinese authorities continued to detain and imprison Tibetans for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of expression and opinion, including for advocating for education in the Tibetan language.
The commission has issued a number of recommendations designed as efforts to improve the situation in Tibet. Its report urges the Trump Administration and Congress to work together to press for unrestricted access to Tibetan autonomous areas in China and to facilitate the full implementation of the Tibetan Policy Act of 2002, including establishing a US diplomatic office in Lhasa, and urging renewed dialogue between Chinese government officials and the Dalai Lama’s representatives.
In this connection, it urges President Donald Trump to meet with the Dalai Lama in his capacity as a spiritual leader and with the leaders of the Central Tibetan Administration and the US Congress to consider passage of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act.
The commission calls for the decision regarding the Dalai Lama’s succession or reincarnation to be reserved for the current Dalai Lama, Tibetan Buddhist leaders, and the Tibetan people rather than being reserved for the atheist leadership of China.
The report urges China to cease to treat the Dalai Lama as a security threat, and calls on the Trump administration and the congress to stress to Beijing the importance of respecting and protecting the Tibetan culture and language—policy changes that would promote and protect social stability in Tibetan areas.
It urges the US authorities to encourage China to respect the right of Tibetans to travel domestically as well as internationally, and to allow access to the Tibetan autonomous areas of China to international journalists, representatives of the United Nations and non-governmental organizations, and US Government officials.
The Trump administration is urged to nominate, as soon as practicable, an appropriate candidate to fill the position of Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, who has traditionally also simultaneously held the position of Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues.
China is urged to be impressed to release Tibetan political prisoners currently detained or imprisoned for the peaceful exercise of their human rights and to cease using arbitrary detention, disappearance, beatings, torture, and intimidation to suppress and punish Tibetans’ peaceful exercise of their rights.
The report calls for the release of the Tibetan language rights advocate Mr Tashi Wangchug and urges Beijing to invite an independent representative of an international organization to meet with Gedun Choekyi Nyima, the 11th Panchen Lama recognized by the Dalai Lama in 1995 but who has been held incommunicado, along with his parents, since May 17, 1995.
The CECC was created by the Congress in 2000 “to monitor China’s compliance with international human rights standards, to encourage the development of the rule of law in the PRC, and to establish and maintain a list of victims of human rights abuses in China”.